FG, South Africa to implement mining pact

Nigeria and South Africa on Tuesday in Abuja dusted a Memorandum of Understanding on mining collaboration signed in 2013 and endorsed a two-year implementation plan beginning from January 2017.

Minister of Solid Minerals Development, Dr. Kayode Fayemi
Minister of Solid Minerals Development, Dr. Kayode Fayemi

The Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Dr. Kayode Fayemi; and his South African counterpart, Mr. Mosebenzi Zwane, endorsed the two-year implementation plan worked out by a joint technical committee set up in June.

The plan, a follow up to the meeting between President Muhammadu Buhari; and the South African President, Jacob Zuma, earlier in the year, is scheduled to commence in January and will be concluded by December 2018.

Tuesday’s meeting was also attended by the Minister of State for Mines and Steel Development, Mr. Abubakar Bwari, and some top officials of the Nigerian Ministry of Mines and Steel Development, while the South African High Commissioner to Nigeria, Mr. Lulu Mnguni, also attended with other top officials of his country’s Ministry of Mineral Resources.

Addressing journalists after the meeting, Fayemi and Zwane said they were optimistic that the economic and technical cooperation between Nigeria and South Africa in the areas of geology, mining and mineral processing, among others, would advance the economies of both nations.

A communiqué issued at the end of the meeting identified 10 strategic areas of cooperation. These include geology, regulatory framework and licensing; mineral processing; metallurgy; artisanal and small scale mining; investment promotion; and capacity building.